China’s CICC to Restructure as Joint Stock Company Ahead of IPO

China International Capital Corp. said it has started restructuring into a joint stock limited company as the once-dominant investment bank works a turnaround under a new leadership.

The Beijing-based company elected its board of directors and the supervisory committee at a shareholders’ meeting on May 15, according to a statement Saturday. CICC hired Bi Mingjian, its former investment-banking head, as chief executive officer earlier in 2015, replacing Levin Zhu.

The country’s first Sino-foreign investment bank plans to seek about $1 billion from an initial public offering in Hong Kong this year, people with knowledge of the matter said in February. Bi’s appointment is expected to help clear uncertainty about the firm’s leadership and smooth its listing plan, a person with knowledge of the matter said earlier that month.

Formed in 1995 as a joint venture between Morgan Stanley and China Construction Bank Corp., CICC brought some of the country’s biggest Red Chips and state-owned firms to market, becoming known as China’s answer to Goldman Sachs Group Inc. Zhu, the son of former Chinese premier Zhu Rongji, wrested control of CICC from Morgan Stanley in 2000, when his father was in office. Under him, CICC succeeded for several years in helping big state-run companies raise capital overseas.

As China deregulated its financial markets, CICC lost ground to rivals that invested aggressively in new areas of business. The company ranked 13th in arranging domestic equity sales last year, data compiled by Bloomberg shows. It ranked first in 2009 and 2010.

Morgan Stanley sold its stake in 2010 to investors including KKR & Co., TPG Capital and Singaporean wealth fund GIC Pte.